If I’m writing about all the mid-60s music and bands that I love, I should probably start with the Zombies; after all, it was their song Brief Candles that inspired the title of my blog. However, I have a greater love for The Kinks, and, having just experienced listening to a fun Apple Music playlist called Character Songs, I suppose the Kinks are as good a place as any to start.
The first rock band I became enamored with was actually The Beatles, thanks to a huge stack of original classic rock records from the 60s and 70s that my 7 older brothers and sisters left behind at our parents’ house. I probably discovered it at about age 7 or 8, and this vinyl treasure trove contained, among other things, almost all of the Beatles’ LP catalog. It’s surprising to me now to reflect that it contained no Kinks records. Maybe my siblings decided to take their Kinks albums with them when they moved out of the house. So anyway, the point is, while I became a Beatles fan very early in my life, I didn’t discover the Kinks until much later – in my 20s and 30s.
Getting back to this Character Songs playlist, I was delighted to have it show up in my “For You” feed because it does a nice job of encapsulating a major aspect of the Kinks, and one that helped hook me as a fan, which is that they write really excellent story songs. This playlist focuses on stories of individual characters such as Lola, David Watts, and the Dedicated Follower of Fashion. You really get a sense of the place and time with the latter two, and the subject of Lola is probably one for the ages. 🙂
Although I’m still not familiar with their whole discography (so much more to discover!), I think so far my favorite albums by the Kinks are as follows:
Of course now you can see it makes perfect sense that I would dig the Character Songs playlist since it is comprised of songs from mostly these albums!
So in closing I’ll leave you with this: f you like your music to transport you the way a good short story does, check these guys out.